Blogospheres

Friday, June 6, 2014

Updates and other random Rush stuff
12:00PM EST | comments (17) |

The new book from veteran music writer Max Mobley titled Rush FAQ: All That's Left To Know About Rock's Greatest Power Trio began shipping from Amazon and other retailers earlier this week and is now available for purchase. Mobley has written for a number of music magazines including Crawdaddy! and Premier Guitar, and has interviewed Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson twice. He's also a huge Rush fan and has seen countless Rush shows dating back to the A Farewell to Kings tour. The book comes in at 250 pages and includes a foreword from Donna Halper. You can check out a copy of the introduction in this post and read a couple of 5-star reviews of the book at Goodreads.com. Order your copy of Rush FAQ at this location.

Nippissing UniversityNipissing University in North Bay, Ontario recently announced that they will be bestowing honorary degrees to all three members of Rush along with 6 other Canadians as the university celebrates the 2014 graduating class next week. It wasn't made clear in the announcement whether or not one or more of the band members will be attending the ceremony.

The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) 2014 took place this past week in San Francisco, and in Monday's keynote presentation Apple introduced a number of new features in both OSX and iOS, including some new Safari browser search features. When demonstrating these features, Apple senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi typed rush in the search bar and Rush's Wikipedia page came up as a suggested location. You can watch the Rush reference in Apple's video of the event online here at about the 28-minute mark and check out a screenshot here. Federighi is a big Rush fan and also used Rush as an example during an Apple special event back in September when demonstrating to the audience how to make an iTunes radio station.

We learned back in February that Neil Peart and Kevin J. Anderson's Clockwork Angels: The Watchmaker's Edition had been nominated for an Audie Award (Audie) which recognize excellence in audiobooks and spoken word entertainment. The winners were announced at the Audies Gala last Thursday evening at the New York Academy of Medicine in New York City and Clockwork Angels: The Watchmaker's Edition came away with the win in the category of Package Design. You can check out the full list of winners in this Washington Post article. The Clockwork Angels: Watchmaker's Edition of the audiobook for Clockwork Angels: The Novel was released last March. The special package was designed by Hugh Syme and contains the seven CDs of the unabridged audiobook, a special booklet, a Clockwork Angels timeline, and an I can't stop thinking big mini poster, all packaged in a full-color WORKING clocktower. You can order one for yourself on Amazon here.

Over the past several weeks Ultimate Classic Rock has been running a bracket-style poll to determine the next inductee into their Ultimate Classic Rock Hall of Fame. Rush was one of the nominees this go-around and after narrowly defeating Judas Priest, Journey and Kansas over the past few weeks they were officially inducted into the UCR Hall of Fame earlier this week. The last round against Kansas was especially close but Rush ended up winning with 50.8% of the vote. Congratulations to Rush and everyone who voted. Consequence of Sound has also been running a bracket-style poll over the last few weeks in order to determine the Greatest Drummer of All Time. Neil Peart made it to the final round after defeating Mitch Mitchell, Keith Moon and Mike Portnoy, where he was pitted against the legendary John Bonham. Voting ended last Friday at 5PM and Neil ended up defeating Bonzo with a whopping 87% of the vote. You can check out the complete results here.

Rush and Google driverless carSan Francisco Chronicle pop culture critic Peter Hartlaub describes himself as the San Francisco Chronicle's biggest Rush fan and this past Wednesday he posted an article titled Driverless cars and Red Barchettas: Did Rush predict a Google-controlled future? In the article Hartlaub performs a tongue-in-cheek analysis of Rush's Red Barchetta as it relates to Google's recent unveiling of the latest version of its driverless vehicle, a two-seater that has no steering wheel or other driver controls. On a related note, The Marist College Circle recently posted a Commuter's guide to great driving music and chose Rush's Tom Sawyer as one of the songs highlighted:

... Instead of screaming and cursing at the cars around you, a more sane activity is to participate in the classic art of steering wheel drumming. It's like having a full drum kit right in front of you, and a full kit is necessary if you want to rock out like Rush's Neil Peart. Widely regarded as one of rock's greatest drummers, Peart crafted the ultimate car drumming song with 1981's "Tom Sawyer," one of the band's most accessible and well-known tracks. The song contains everything from a steady beat, to a drum solo, to a section of 7/8 time-the perfect components to jam along to on the wheel while stuck in traffic.

VH1 posted their list of the 10 Most High-Pitched Singers In Heavy Metal And Hard Rock earlier this week and Geddy Lee made the cut at #7. Here's what they had to say:

The Rush bassist is a natural tenor, and though he doesn't always go for the highest of high notes, he isn't afraid to let it fly to put a song over the top, such as on the classic rock radio standard "Closer To The Heart".

Speaking of Geddy Lee, Anthrax bassist Frank Bello was recently interviewed for Ultimate Guitar and talked about how he grew up without a father and instead saw Steve Harris, Geddy Lee and Geezer Butler as surrogate dads:

... my heroes were bass players. I guess everybody needs somebody to look up to. I didn't grow up with a dad so my heroes I guess - or whatever you want to call them - heroes or father figures, guys to look up to that gave me a goal were my bass player guys. I call them Steve Harris, Geddy Lee and Geezer Butler. Those guys made me want to play bass. ...

CBS Sports writer and music junkie Matt Norlander tweeted out a challenge earlier this week where he created a list of rock stars and assigned a dollar amount from $1-10 to each one. He then asks the Twittersphere to create a 5-piece fictional rock band by spending $25. Geddy Lee is on the bass player list with a value of $7, and Neil Peart topped the drummer list with a $10 assigned value. Thanks to dman2332 for the heads up.

This coming Thursday, June 12th will mark the 2nd anniversary of the release of Rush's Clockwork Angels album. Can you believe it's been 2 years already!? To celebrate, here's video of a Clockwork Angels album Q&A session with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson hosted by Jeff Woods from around the time of the release. You can check it out below or at this link:

That's all for this week. Have a great weekend Rush fans!!

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#17 - Posted 6/11/14 @10:41PM by Enigmaticus [contact]

CraigJ,

You make a very interesting point: "You can't even define Rock n Roll."

That is one of the reasons why, I had started creating my website 17 years ago. I have been a "progressive rock" enthusiast for over 35 years. When I had first heard "Hemispheres" back in February, 1979, as a 17 year old, I was immediately hooked. Regardless of whether "progressive rock" was cool, or not, I have enjoyed it and have continued to support it's cause. Now I will not say that I like all of the "progressive rock" bands, nor will I say that I detest all of the "heavy metal" bands, either. I will however say, that if the group had created innovative, original music that did not feature screaming for no apparent reason and did not nauseate me, I would probably like it.

I wonder what Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johannes Brahms, Antonio Vivaldi, Ludwig Van Beethoven and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky would have thought of Rush?
#16 - Posted 6/8/14 @6:23PM by CraigJ [contact]

I've always found the need to classify things like this to be based on the classifier's bias and perception - on man's Rock and Roll is another man's Country. You can't even really define Rock n Roll - IMO Rush has more in common with Rachmaninov and Mozart than Elvis for example, but that doesn't make Rush "Classical" Rush is Rush, Rachmaninov is Rachmaninov, Elvis is Elvis. It's music. Enjoy it.
#15 - Posted 6/8/14 @6:01PM by jiminseattle [contact]

It quite simply is Rock n Roll isn't it. What a beautiful thing that is.
#14 - Posted 6/8/14 @5:28PM by Denny Crane [contact]

Heavy Progressive
Heavy Symphonic Progressive
Symphonic Progressive
Symphonic Progressive/Art Rock
Art Rock
Art Rock/Eclectic Progressive
Eclectic Progressive/Progressive Hard Rock
Symphonic Eclectic Progressive

? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

Dude.... it's Rock-n-Roll. You've seemed to miss that category somehow.

Seriously, let the thing be for crying out loud.

DC

Posted by Denny Crane on Sunday, from his Mom's basement, at 5:25pm
#13 - Posted 6/8/14 @1:31PM by jiminseattle [contact]

Pithy. Just kidding. :>)
#12 - Posted 6/8/14 @1:13PM by Enigmaticus [contact]

Let's try this again, shall we?

#11 - Posted 6/8/14 @1:07PM by Enigmaticus [contact]

#4.

You are in a sense, correct. Rush is definitely hard to define even within their sub genre of progressive rock. However, under no circumstances would I consider Rush to be a "heavy metal" band. They may have influenced and inspired the development of "progressive metal," but they are not a prog metal band, either.

Of course when dealing with Rush, I have divided their albums into 5 distinct periods. I have differed from Prog Archives opinion wise on Rush being classified as a " Heavy Progressive" act.

The Early Period (1968-1976)

Heavy Progressive

1. Rush
2. Fly By Night

Heavy Symphonic Progressive

3. Caress Of Steel
4. 2112
5. All The World's A Stage

Middle Period (1977-1981) aka The Classic Period

Symphonic Progressive

6. A Farewell To Kings
7. Hemispheres

Symphonic Progressive/Art Rock

8. Permanent Waves
9. Moving Pictures
10. Exit... Stage Left

Early Modern Period (1982-1988)

Art Rock

11. Signals
12. Grace Under Pressure
13. Power Windows
14. Hold Your Fire
15. A Show Of Hands

Middle Modern Period (1989-1998)

Art Rock

16. Presto
17. Roll The Bones

Art Rock/Eclectic Progressive

18. Counterparts
19. Test For Echo
20. Different Stages

Late Modern Period (1999-201?)

Eclectic Progressive/Progressive Hard Rock

21. Vapor Trails
22. Rush In Rio
23. Feedback

Symphonic Eclectic Progressive

24. R30
25. Snakes & Arrows
26. Snakes & Arrows Live
27. Clockwork Angels
28. Clockwork Angels Tour
#11 - Posted 6/8/14 @1:07PM by Enigmaticus [contact]

#4.

You are in a sense, correct. Rush is definitely hard to define even within their sub genre of progressive rock. However, under no circumstances would I consider Rush to be a "heavy metal" band. They may have influenced and inspired the development of "progressive metal," but they are not a prog metal band, either.

Of course when dealing with Rush, I have divided their albums into 5 distinct periods. I have differed from Prog Archives opinion wise on Rush being classified as a " Heavy Progressive" act.

The Early Period (1968-1976)

Heavy Progressive

1. Rush
2. Fly By Night

Heavy Symphonic Progressive

3. Caress Of Steel
4. 2112
5. All The World's A Stage

Middle Period (1977-1981) aka The Classic Period

Symphonic Progressive

6. A Farewell To Kings
7. Hemispheres

Symphonic Progressive/Art Rock

8. Permanent Waves
9. Moving Pictures
10. Exit... Stage Left

Early Modern Period (1982-1988)

Art Rock

11. Signals
12. Grace Under Pressure
13. Power Windows
14. Hold Your Fire
15. A Show Of Hands

Middle Modern Period (1989-1998)

Art Rock

16. Presto
17. Roll The Bones

Art Rock/Eclectic Progressive

18. Counterparts
19. Test For Echo
20. Different Stages

22. Late Modern Period (1999-201?)

Progressive Hard Rock

21. Vapor Trails
22. Rush In Rio
23. Feedback

Symphonic Eclectic Progressive

24. R30
25. Snakes & Arrows
26. Snakes & Arrows Live
27. Clockwork Angels
28. Clockwork Angels Tour
#10 - Posted 6/8/14 @1:03PM by Enigmaticus [contact]

#8.

In Rush's early days, (1974- 1982), they would release an album approximately once a year. From 1982 to 1996, Rush would release an album once every other year, or so. However, after Neil's tragedies and their 5 year hiatus, Rush has released a new studio album (with new material) approximately once every 5 years; there are about 5 years between the release of "Vapor Trails" (2002) and "Snakes & Arrows" (2007) and "Clockwork Angels" (2012). Based upon those recent trends, I would not expect to see a new studio album release by Rush, prior to 2017.
#9 - Posted 6/8/14 @8:32AM by Denny Crane [contact]

Geddy likes his baseball and Alex is out vacationing a bit as well. Neil is probably out doing his thing too. They deserve the rest of the entire summer to goof off and enjoy the down time.

However, I hope we learn soon that Alex gets bored and calls over to Ged's house:

ring, ring...... ring, ring

"Hello Dirk, I've been playing around a bit with some really cool riffs, I'll be over later (with wine) to let you hear a few"

DC
#8 - Posted 6/7/14 @3:04PM by cakes and sparrows [contact]

Rush releases a new studio album every other year, right? I'm so looking forward to picking up the new one in September!

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